basketball The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time  

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List Rules Only players drafted #1 overall in the NBA Draft

Having the #1 overall pick in the NBA Draft could set your team up for success for more than a decade. However, not all #1 picks are created equal (as this list shows) and teams can regret passing up on superstars such as Michael Jordan or Kevin Durant. We've compiled a list of all the #1 overall draft picks in NBA Draft history to see who is voted the best top overall first round pick of all time.
list ordered by

1
2,102 641
LeBron James is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
LeBron James Small forward, Power forward, Point forward - 2003 Cleveland Cavaliers (St. Vincent-St. Mary HS)

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2
1,603 414
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar Center - 1968 Milwaukee Bucks (UCLA)

3
1,674 474
Magic Johnson is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Magic Johnson Point guard, Power forward - 1979 Los Angeles Lakers (Michigan State)

4
1,541 398
Shaquille O'Neal is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Shaquille O'Neal Center - 1992 Orlando Magic (LSU)

5
1,524 397
Tim Duncan is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Tim Duncan Power forward, Center - 1997 San Antonio Spurs (Wake Forest)

6
1,228 240
Hakeem Olajuwon is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Hakeem Olajuwon Center - 1984 Houston Rockets (Houston)

7
1,253 377
Allen Iverson is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Allen Iverson Point guard, Shooting guard - 1996 Philadelphia 76ers (Georgetown)

8
962 262
Oscar Robertson is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Oscar Robertson Point guard, Shooting guard - 1960 Cincinnati Royals (Cincinnati)

9
878 257
David Robinson is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
David Robinson Center - 1987 San Antonio Spurs (Navy)

10
753 310
Patrick Ewing is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Patrick Ewing Center - 1985 New York Knicks (Georgetown)

11
522 325
Elgin Baylor is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Elgin Baylor Small forward - 1958 Minneapolis Lakers (Seattle)

12
729 411
Anthony Davis is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Anthony Davis Power forward, Center - 2012 New Orleans Hornets (Kentucky)

13
491 348
James Worthy is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
James Worthy Small forward - 1982 Los Angeles Lakers (North Carolina)

14
732 463
Kyrie Irving is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Kyrie Irving Point guard - 2011 Cleveland Cavaliers (Duke)

15
559 412
Yao Ming is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Yao Ming Center - 2002 Houston Rockets (China)

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16
504 318
Chris Webber is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Chris Webber Power forward, Center - 1993 Golden State Warriors (Michigan)

17
604 309
John Wall is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
John Wall Point guard - 2010 Washington Wizards (Kentucky)

18
386 322
Bill Walton is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Bill Walton Center - 1974 Portland Trail Blazers (UCLA)

19
443 510
Blake Griffin is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Blake Griffin Power forward - 2009 Los Angeles Clippers (Oklahoma)

20
577 274
Karl-Anthony Towns is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Karl-Anthony Towns 2015 Minnesota Timberwolves (Kentucky)

21
536 455
Derrick Rose is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Derrick Rose Point guard - 2008 Chicago Bulls (Memphis)

22
368 482
Dwight Howard is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Dwight Howard Power forward, Center - 2004 Orlando Magic (Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy)

23
436 364
Andrew Wiggins is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Andrew Wiggins 2014 Cleveland Cavaliers (Kansas)

24
254 284
Elvin Hayes is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Elvin Hayes Power forward, Center - 1968 San Diego Rockets (Houston)

25
268 275
Larry Johnson is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Larry Johnson Power forward - 1991 Charlotte Hornets (UNLV)

26
160 284
Ralph Sampson is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Ralph Sampson Center - 1983 Houston Rockets (Virginia)

27
150 237
David Thompson is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
David Thompson 1975 Atlanta Hawks (North Carolina State)

28
133 266
Bob Lanier is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Bob Lanier Center - 1970 Detroit Pistons (St. Bonaventure)

29
151 286
Glenn Robinson is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Glenn Robinson Small forward - 1994 Milwaukee Bucks (Purdue)

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30
101 260
Brad Daugherty is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Brad Daugherty Center - 1986 Cleveland Cavaliers (North Carolina)

31
126 278
Elton Brand is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Elton Brand Power forward - 1999 Chicago Bulls (Duke)

32
111 249
Mark Aguirre is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Mark Aguirre Small forward - 1981 Dallas Mavericks (DePaul)

33
90 301
Danny Manning is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Danny Manning Power forward - 1988 Los Angeles Clippers (Kansas)

34
145 399
Andrew Bogut is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Andrew Bogut Center - 2006 Milwaukee Bucks (Utah)

35
82 246
Doug Collins is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Doug Collins Shooting guard, Small forward - 1973 Philadelphia 76ers (Illinois State)

36
67 244
Walt Bellamy is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Walt Bellamy Power forward, Center - 1961 Chicago Packers (Indiana)

37
97 240
Derrick Coleman is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Derrick Coleman Small forward, Power forward, Center - 1990 New Jersey Nets (Syracuse)

38
122 274
Kenyon Martin is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Kenyon Martin Power forward - 2000 New Jersey Nets (Cincinnati)

39
75 232
Mychal Thompson is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Mychal Thompson Power forward, Center - 1978 Portland Trail Blazers (Minnesota)

40
51 234
Austin Carr is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Austin Carr 1971 Cleveland Cavaliers (Notre Dame)

41
43 225
Cazzie Russell is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Cazzie Russell Small forward - 1966 New York Knicks (Michigan)

42
49 251
Joe Smith is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Joe Smith Power forward, Center - 1995 Golden State Warriors (Maryland)

43
65 24
Ben Simmons is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
MichaelChoi added Ben Simmons

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44
71 206
John Lucas is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
John Lucas 1976 Houston Rockets (Maryland)

45
59 23
Markelle Fultz is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
MichaelChoi added Markelle Fultz

46
31 215
Jimmy Walker is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Jimmy Walker Shooting guard - 1967 Detroit Pistons (Providence)

47
59 353
Andrea Bargnani is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Andrea Bargnani Small forward, Power forward, Center - 2006 Toronto Raptors (Italy)

48
100 443
Greg Oden is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Greg Oden Center - 2007 Portland Trail Blazers (Ohio State)

49
36 203
Joe Barry Carroll is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Joe Barry Carroll Center - 1980 Golden State Warriors (Purdue)

50
37 216
Pervis Ellison is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best #1 Overall NBA Draft Picks of All Time
Pervis Ellison Power forward, Center - 1989 Sacramento Kings (Louisville)